UN General Secretary Ban Ki-moon arrives at the World Forum in The Hague on March 24, 2014 on the first day of the two-day Nuclear Security Summit (NSS). (AFP PHOTO / POOL / MARCO DE SWART)
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The United Nations accused Syria's government and rebels of hindering aid access, suggesting both sides could be violating U.N. Security Council demands that emergency relief reach civilians caught in the crossfire of the 3-year-old civil war.In Ban's first report to the council on the implementation of the Feb. 22 resolution, he said 175,000 people remain besieged by government forces and 45,000 people trapped by opposition groups in several areas.Some 9.3 million people in Syria need humanitarian assistance, Ban said, while another 2.6 million have fled the three-year civil war, sparked in March 2011 by a revolt against President Bashar Assad.In the 13-page report, Ban said there were significant challenges to the delivery of aid in Syria.The United Nations presented a list of 258 hard-to-reach areas to the working group, but many of those locations have yet to be accessed with assistance, Ban said.Ban said aid supplies were allowed to be brought into Syria through government-controlled crossings with Lebanon and Jordan.U.N. aid chief Valerie Amos had urged the Security Council to act to increase humanitarian access in Syria.
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